The Eastern Cape Provincial Assembly has 63 members. The number of seats that a party has in the Assembly is in proportion to the number of voters that voted for it in the elections.
The table below shows the number of seats each party has ‘earned’ in the Eastern Cape Provincial by citizens voting in the 2014 National Elections. A comparison between previous elections and this years winners and losers in comparison to 2009 is also included.
2009 – 2014
The Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature strives to deepen democracy, promote development and build a better life for all, through law-making, effective public participation, and vigorous oversight.
The Legislature is the arm of government that discusses Bills introduced by the Executive Council, writes new laws, changes any laws that need to be changed, scraps old laws that are no longer needed and discusses national laws that affect the province and debates on matters of public importance.
The Legislature is therefore the highest law-making body in the province. The Legislature has a constitutional obligation to check on the work of the Executive (oversight role) and to provide a forum to facilitate public participation in the legislative processes of the Legislature. The Legislature also determines the budget for the province by scrutinizing and debating budgets allocated to departments.
Members of the Provincial Legislature (MPLs) are elected through a system called proportional representation. This means that, before an election, each party draws up a list of candidates in order of preference. People on the list become accountable to the public as public representatives.
Members of the Legislature in proportion to the number of votes the party wins in the election. For example, if the party wins half the votes, it will hold half the seats in the Legislature. MPLs are directly accountable to the public as public representatives.
The responsibility of the Provincial Legislature is to discuss Bills that are introduced by the Executive Council. The Legislature must consult the public about the Bills, and has the power to make amendments to the Bills. The Legislature only pass the Bills if they believe that it is in the interests of the public. The Legislature must also check on the work of the Executive Council and make sure that the laws that they pass are carried out.
Members of the Provincial Legislature (MPLs) may also submit Bills of their own (Private Members’ Bill). Standing Committees may also submit Bills in the Provincial Legislature. MPLs are representatives of the people of the province, therefore people must hold them accountable. Although Parliament and the Provincial Legislatures make laws, it is the courts that must punish those who break them. This limits the power of the Legislature.
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